The Crippled America hashtag started an important conversation. It's not the one Trump intended.

How disability Twitter took back the #CrippledAmerica hashtag.

Like so many words centered on impaired bodies, "cripple" has a negative connotation.

So when presidential candidate Donald Trump managed to both insult a reporter who has a physical disability and release a book titled "Crippled America: How to Make America Great Again," you can bet Disability Twitter responded.


Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images.

The #CrippledAmerica tweet-in started in a blog post by Nina G., who was, at that time, the world's only stuttering stand-up comedian.

She wrote:

“In protest to Trump's initial remarks of Kovaleski and subsequent comments about how much money he has spent on people with disabilities, I propose we have a TWEET-IN protest (just like a sit-in).

To help educate Trump and the rest of the US about the American Disability experience, tweet #CrippledAmerica (a hash tag he has used to publicize his book released this month).

Share your experiences of life, love, barriers, employment, parenting, sex, art and everything else that represents real Disabled Americans! Let's make our experiences heard! #CrippledAmerica #DisabilityPride #Empowerment"



Folks started tweeting about their American disability experiences immediately after reading Nina's blog.

They "hijacked" Trump's hashtag like she suggested, using it to share their daily lives with the world:

Thousands of tweets later, Twitter is full of everyday details about living with a disability.

The tweets cover everything from health care to social norms to job interviews and, of course, Trump.

Some folks also wanted to remind Trump that it's not just that America is crippled — it's that he actually needs "Crippled America," too.

To Mr. Trump, I'll say this: Americans with disabilities want you to know that supporting Crippled America is one important route to making America great again.

Please try it out.

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